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Written by Béa   
Wednesday, 16 April 2008 11:05

Hello I’m Beatrice and you’re doing this interview for Metal Heart Webzine.
Vassago: Hi Beatrice, I think that we’ve crossed each other on the Guitar Part forum some times ago if I’m talking about the same Beatrice ;)
Would you like to present yourself and your group?
Vassago: Nice nearly thirty years old male and passionate of music and of guitar (it’s original would you tell me haha) guitar player. Sensitive, worker, bad temper… so I won’t make you my astral theme, it might asleep everybody ^^. Let’s talk about the group.
Nedra is first of all Five different persons going towards a same goal, make rock between classic and modern. This mix could be our originality. Our weapons are simple that is to say a pair of guitars to support the vocals, drums to underline the bass low notes. Our process in before all to propose an energetic music played with serious without being too much serious. Our QG is in Paris, but we hope very rapidly invade the rest of France, in a pacific and musical manner.
What are the influences of the group?
We take our inspirations in a lot of different things, the US groups such as Faith No More, Alter Bridge or yet System of a down, UK groups such as Muse, for the lyrics it can come from variety or rock with groups such as Matmatah or Noir Desir, but our readings or our lives are what is inspiring us mostly.
You have chosen to sing in French for your first album « D’Un Extreme A L’Autre », why this choice? Will you continue in this direction or will you be tempted by the English language?
We give a great importance to the texts and we have chosen to sing in French in order to be understand by our public and because we like this language. We know that it’ll be harder to get exported because of this choice, but the most important is to please ourselves and it is there where you can find it.
In the future Nedra will continue in that way but it is not impossible that some tracks will be using other languages and not especially English. We will do according to the inspiration of the moment.
If I say that Nedra is making rock a little in the way that is was done in the 80s, what do you think of it, I am wrong?
Yes and no. On this first album we are exploring varied influences with titles like « Arriviste » or « le Coup de grace » which sound very rock’n’roll and can make you think of the 80s, but aside the Cabrel’s cover or a title like Lemnos are created in today’s rock directly inspired by the 90s scene. Our sound however is coming right from what is doing today. Later this direction should be accentuated, but we don’t want to deny what we like, rock stays something timeless and the mix stays what is more interesting today.
The group seems to have two good guitarists (not that the others are not good!!!) what are they professional backgrounds?
Polo has begun the guitar rather early by taking classical courses, and then he has turned towards rock by working alone like a man. Before that he learnt rudiments of music and piano in a private musical school. He also has studied music and sound treatment at the ISTS, it allowed him to open his mind to all kind of music in which he takes his playing.
On my side I followed a rather similar path. I began rudiments of music and piano in an academy for 10 years before beginning guitar, a little by chance. I took some lessons during one year and after continued alone and as Polo I’ve made the ISTS to become sound engineer. Our varied formations befor Nedra have been very forming. For the rest of the team it is about the same thing, we begin with a teacher and we explode and discover the things by ourselves, by curiosity and the wanting to learn and to get better.
You have made a cover of a Francis Cabrel’ song « Les Murs De Poussiere », why this choice?
Because it’s a damned rock track! Francis is a much underestimated rocker and a bluesman (at least in these registers). We just had to swell a little the sound and to modernise a little the purpose. We do not have yet the occasion of letting him hear the song but I’m impatient to know what he’s going to think of our adaptation. I think in definitive that what has attracted us in this cover it the responsibility to appropriate it and add to it a little of our personality. Cover to cover can be funny, but transforming and rearrange stay a more passionate work.
It seems that a good harmony between the members of the group (at least it is what i feel when listening the album), is it the case?
Yes most of the time it is the case. As in all passionate micro society there are sometimes some disagreements which can give hard discussions. But we all go in the same sense and at the end we always find ourselves. But the important it not that we are only musicians who play together. I had the honour to be the wedding witness of our bass player Dr. Jones, we try to be available and to listen to each other as much as we can do it. To say that we do not ever have a raw would be a lie. But we stay 5 friends whatever happen and between friends a good row is better than a cold ignorance. Music has made meet us, and today there is more than music between us.
Can you talk about the themes of the album?
They are rather varied and are not shut down in a genre like metal or punk which more or less is dealing always with the same themes. At the image of music, we are varying the subjects. We borough to variety the texts with romantic themes « Le Point de Non Retour », « ?il pour ?il », we explore the wide subject of death with a philosophical aspect or purely descriptive like in « Prisonnier ». « Templiers » is an historical story which does not take any side, « Arriviste »,« D’un extreme a l’autre » or « Autodafe » are denouncing some drifts of our society like some French rock group know to make it, « Lemnos » is inspired by a SF book, it is without any doubt our text which is more alike to metal inspirations to me. Curiously it is however one of our more fusion titles on this album. « Whisky » is lighter as well as « Le Coup de Grace ». Once more our wealth, as the one of the people who surround us and where we come from are present in the mixes.
What is your creative process?
One of us brings musical ideas; it can be a riff, a complete and structured instrumental trackor a simple idea. We often begin with the music. Then we destructure, we work, we rearrange to find something in order not to bore the listener. Everybody add a little of its personality in the arrangements, even if the composer is one only person. Then the texts come, just after the vocals melody which is most of the time part of the arrangements than the composition. It is very rare that the vocals melody is at the origin of a title. On this album it is even totally exclude. But we are moving and the next album will probably follow other paths.
Have you begun to work on new material?
Yes, we already work on the successor of « D’un Extreme a l’Autre », some demos are only waiting for voices, and others are just ideas. Not enough to affirm something about the direction that will be given to this second album. We can just say that it will even more mark of today’s music because it is towards what we all go. Maybe of new horizons and new mixes…
What do you think of today’s French scene? It is hard to release an album?
In France it is extremely hard to live of music, I do not teach you something I think. However there is a breeding ground of groups and courageous little labels to release them. This entire little world does not live of its music. That is why we need press, associations, every little help to go forward. All the groups which have more than 10 years of existence in France have to be respected whatever you like the music or not. Because they principal motor stay passion they have for music and the fans who support them and the courage is nearly unconsciousness as there are so many traps.
The word of the end is for you, what would you like to add?
Thanks to you to begin.
I do invite all the curious ones to listen to our first baby, from here the returns are rather good (hope it’ll continue). Those who will like it are invited to let it know, because the “mouth to ear” stays our best chance to arrive not to live from our music, but to continue and to go further.
Our album is sell on our site, extracts can also be heard, just to make an idea before buying; our forum is open to everyone to discuss with us or between fans, an active street team has been created to allow others to participate to our adventure. To be brief, Nedra will be what you wanted it to be. With us but not without you!
Thanks for this interview.
It was a pleasure.


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